Peart - If You Don’t Run Away and Hide

Scott K Fish

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Aug 18, 2014
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Maine, USA

SKF NOTE: Yesterday, within a box of papers, I found a typed 1985 letter from Neil Peart. He had just finished two-and-a-half weeks on his “little computer,” typing up 40 pages from his recent China bicycle trip journal.

The next step, Neil wrote, was to have his typed notes “typeset.” The result, I’m pretty certain, was Neil’s self-published book, “Riding the Golden Lion.”

On page two, near the close of his letter, Neil transitions to Rush business.

Antipathy may be too strong a word to use for Neil’s dislike of the non-performing necessities of his music business. As professional and skilled as Neil was with those necessities, he is quite clear writing in this 1985 letter, how important it was for him to pursue his other passions: traveling and writing.

“It sure is a good thing I went away, I was working on album cover hassles, video, and the new bio’ until literally the night I left, and the day I returned it all started again, getting ready for the tour, production meetings, organize rehearsals, get the gear sorted out, get the tour program laid out - It’s like a never-ending treadmill, and if you don’t get off and run away and hide, it doesn’t leave you alone.”

Source: Letter to Scott K Fish written October 31, 1985 in Toronto, Canada

SKFBlog - Life Beyond the Cymbals - https://scottkfish.com/2022/12/01/peart-if-you-dont-run-away-and-hide/


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Feb 24, 2016
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Oakville, ON
There was a period in the mid-80s where Rush was close to calling it quits - predominantly because Neil didn’t want to do it anymore. With all I’ve read, I think the “fame” that Moving Pictures generated was stressful for an introvert like Neil. This squares with the letter you have.

This, in my opinion, also being early enough in their career where they had less control over their calendar.

As a huge Rush fan I am glad they/he persevered.

Bonus pic for your entertainment.


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Feb 3, 2012
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There was another thread about artists we've soured on over the years.

I much prefer to talk about the bands I've gained more respect for over time!

Rush and Neil would be at the top of that list. I was a big fan in the early days, but even with that, the more I listen and understand the more respect I have for these guys.

Hands down my all time favorite band. They had everything. Great writing, great musicianship, thoughtful lyrics, great arrangements, everything. The only knock might be Geddy's voice, which turns off some people. But he continually worked on that throughout his career and he got better and better. It's so awesome that a band from that era doesn't have all the drama, drug rehab, battered women stories, multiple members, on and on. All of which is understandable with all the fame and circumstances. But even more incredible that Rush never got caught up in that. They were always grounded and professional.

True professionals all, led by Neil who was probably more responsible for a bands sound and direction than any other drummer. Just awesome!



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Feb 22, 2010
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East Lansing, MI
Just shows how much more he did than play and write, he was involved in the art and all the other things that made Rush look like Rush and feel like Rush when you looked at a poster or shirt.